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Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

Research Integrity and Peer Review0

Posted by Admin in on April 26, 2016

The new journal, Research Integrity and Peer Review, will be launched by the well-respected publisher BioMed Central on Tuesday 3rd May.

Research Integrity and Peer Review is an international, open access, peer reviewed journal that encompasses all aspects of integrity in research publication, including peer review, study reporting, and research and publication ethics. Particular consideration is given to submissions that address current controversies and limitations in the field and offer potential solutions.

As well as an editorial by Editors-in-Chief Elizabeth Wager, Iveta Simera, Stephanie Harriman and Maria Kowalczuk, the launch issue will include two papers focusing on research reporting:

  • Aaron Bernstein and colleague’s CORE Reference, a manual and resource website for reporting interventional clinical studies and
  • Thomas Barbor and colleague’s new guideline for reporting of two critical determinants of health, sex and gender in research studies.

In addition, there is a review of conflict of interest disclosure in biomedical research by Associate Editor Adam Dunn and colleagues, while Harm Nijveen and Paul van der Vet’s article reports on the propagation of errors in citation networks, a study involving the entire citation network of a widely cited paper published in, and later retracted from, the journal Nature.

The Chair of the Editorial Board has invited members of the AHRECS community to submit papers.

Want a favorable peer review? Buy one – The Watchdogs (Ivan Oransky and Adam Marcus April 2016)0

Posted by Admin in on April 24, 2016

Excerpt: What do Henry Kissinger and Martin Scorsese have in common? Fun fact: Both evidently review scientific manuscripts for money.

OK, maybe that’s not quite true. In fact, it’s not at all true. But headshots of both men appear in the bios of two purported reviewers (one of which has a woman’s name, sorry, Martin!) for a company called EditPub that sells various scientific services, including peer reviews.

The EditPub site (which seemed on Thursday to be no longer up and running), is almost entirely in Chinese, but its homepage bills it as a “service center for scientific research.” Its existence came to light earlier this month after the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology retracted a 2015 article by a group from Dalian University in China. According to the journal, EditPub had “compromised” the peer review process in a way that the journal has so far refused to make public.

Click here to read the full article

Click here to read the Retraction Watch story about the recent retraction

 Our thanks to Dalmeet Singh Chawla for alerting us about this article

Do interventions to reduce misconduct actually work? Maybe not, says new report – Retraction Watch (Alison McCook 2016)0

Posted by Admin in on April 16, 2016

Excerpt: Can we teach good behavior in the lab? That’s the premise behind a number of interventions aimed at improving research integrity, invested in by universities across the world and even private companies. Trouble is, a new review from the Cochrane Library shows that there is little good evidence to show these interventions work. We spoke with authors Elizabeth Wager (on the board of directors of our parent organization) and Ana Marusic, at the University of Split School of Medicine in Croatia.

Retraction Watch: Let’s start by talking about what you found – looking at 31 studies (including 15 randomized controlled trials) that included more than 9500 participants, you saw there was some evidence that training in research integrity had some effects on participants’ attitudes, but “minimal (or short-lived) effects on their knowledge.” Can you talk more about that, including why the interventions had little impact on knowledge?

Elizabeth Wager and Ana Marusic: Because studies use different measures of success, we grouped them into those looking at effects on behavior, attitude or knowledge. Obviously, it’s easier to measure researchers’ attitudes towards misconduct than to measure actual misconduct. You would expect training should increase knowledge, but many studies showed little effect. This might be because most researchers already know about types of misconduct and it isn’t lack of knowledge that causes them to go astray. A few studies looked at effects immediately after training but found these had worn off after a few months.

Click here to read this interview

From research integrity to researcher integrity: issues of conduct, competence and commitment (Papers: Sarah Jane Banks 2015)0

Posted by Admin in on April 6, 2016

Paper presented at Academy of Social Sciences and British Sociological Association event, Virtue Ethics in the Practice and Review of Social Science Research, London, 1st May 2015

Abstract: This presentation will discuss the concept of researcher integrity in the context of the rapidly growing concern with research integrity. I will explore researcher integrity as a complex quality of character or ‘virtue’, which has a focus on the motivations and commitments of the researcher as a practitioner in the research community. This contrasts with the common focus on research integrity, which usually considers the integrity of the research practice – although clearly the integrity of the researcher and of the research organisation influence the conduct of research. I will discuss what is meant by researcher integrity, including weak and strong versions of the concept (conduct according to extant standards, versus reflexive commitment to ideals of what research should be at its best), and how character-based approaches to ethics complement and extend conduct-focussed, regulatory approaches. Whilst the concept of ‘character’ is disputed, and there are critiques of ‘character-building’ education programmes, there are also equally valid challenges to regulatory, conduct-focussed approaches to ethics.

Banks S J (2015) From research integrity to researcher integrity: issues of conduct, competence and commitment. In: Virtue Ethics in the Practice and Review of Social Science Research, May 1, 2015, BSA meeting rooms, London SW6 2PY.
Conference page:…